LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Dodgers and Louisville Slugger today announced that outfielder Matt Kemp won his second career Silver Slugger Award. The awards were handed out in a special hour-long telecast on MLB Network this afternoon.
After winning a Rawlings Gold Glove Award yesterday, Kemp became the first-ever Dodger to take home both a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger in multiple seasons after also doing so in 2009. The only other Dodgers to have won both awards in the same season were Dusty Baker (1981) and Russell Martin (2007). Kemp joined the Reds' Brandon Phillips and the Rockies' Troy Tulowitzki as the only National League players to claim both a Rawlings Gold Glove and a Silver Slugger Award in 2011.
Kemp was also honored last week as the Dodgers' first-ever winner of the Hank Aaron Award, which recognizes the most outstanding offensive performers in each league. Additionally, he was selected as Baseball America's Major League Player of the Year, chosen as a Sporting News All-Star and is a finalist for the Players Choice Award for the Player of the Year, which will be announced tomorrow.
In his fourth full Major League campaign, Kemp put together one of the best all-around offensive seasons in Major League history. In addition to a Triple Crown chase that came down to the final week of the season, Kemp finished just one home run shy of becoming the fifth player in Major League history to hit at least 40 home runs and steal at least 40 bases in the same season.
Kemp ranked among the National League's top four in batting average (.324, 3rd), home runs (39, 1st), RBI (126, 1st), runs (115, 1st), stolen bases (40, T-2nd), on-base percentage (.399, 4th), slugging percentage (.586, 2nd), hits (195, 2nd), multi-hit games (57, T-1st) and total bases (353, 1st). He became the seventh player in history to finish the season ranked in the top three in homers, average, RBI and steals in his respective league, joining Hall of Famers Ty Cobb (1907, 1909, 1910, 1911), Honus Wagner (1908), George Sisler (1920), Chuck Klein (1932), Willie Mays (1955) and Hank Aaron (1963) as the only players to accomplish this feat.
The 27-year-old became the first Dodger to lead the National League in home runs and RBI since Dolph Camilli in 1941 and finished the campaign as the first Dodger ever to lead the NL in homers, RBI and runs scored.
The Oklahoma native is one of five players in Major League history to hit more than 30 homers, steal more than 35 bases, drive in more than 100 runs and hit higher than .310 in a season, joining Ken Williams (1922), Barry Bonds (1992), Alex Rodriguez (1998) and Vladimir Guerrero (2002).
It's the seventh time that a Dodger outfielder has been honored with a Silver Slugger and since the creation of the award in 1980, a Dodger has taken home the honor 22 times, led by Mike Piazza's five trophies.
The Silver Slugger award winners were determined by a vote of Major League Baseball coaches and managers who named the players they felt were the best offensive producers at each position in both the American and National leagues in 2011. Selections were based on a combination of offensive statistics, including batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage, as well as the coaches' and managers' general impressions of a player's overall offensive value. Managers and coaches were not allowed to vote for players on their own teams.
The specially designed Silver Slugger Award will be presented to Kemp by a representative of the Hillerich & Bradsby Co., makers of Louisville Slugger, the Official Bat of Major League Baseball, in a ceremony early in the 2012 season. The trophy is three feet tall and bears the engraved name of the winner and his Silver Slugger teammates in his respective league.